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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of September 18, 2014

Title 7Subtitle BChapter IISubchapter APart 245 → §245.9


Title 7: Agriculture
PART 245—DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS


§245.9   Special assistance certification and reimbursement alternatives.

(a) Provision 1. A School Food Authority of a school having at least 80 percent of its enrolled children determined eligible for free or reduced price meals may, at its option, authorize the school to reduce annual certification and public notification for those children eligible for free meals to once every two consecutive school years. This alternative shall be known as provision 1 and the following requirements shall apply:

(1) A School Food Authority of a school operating under provision 1 requirements shall publicly notify in accordance with §245.5, parents of enrolled children who are receiving free meals once every two consecutive school years, and shall publicly notify in accordance with §245.5, parents of all other enrolled children on an annual basis.

(2) The 80 percent enrollment eligibility for this alternative shall be based on the school's March enrollment data of the previous school year, or on other comparable data.

(3) A School Food Authority of a school operating under provision 1, shall count the number of free, reduced price and paid meals served to children in that school as the basis for monthly reimbursement claims.

(b) Provision 2. A school food authority may certify children for free and reduced price meals for up to 4 consecutive school years in the schools which serve meals at no charge to all enrolled children; provided that public notification and eligibility determinations are in accordance with §§245.5 and 245.3, respectively, during the base year as defined in paragraph (b)(6) of this section. The Provision 2 base year is the first year, and is included in the 4-year cycle. The following requirements apply:

(1) Meals at no charge. Participating schools must serve reimbursable meals, as determined by a point of service observation, or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter, to all participating children at no charge.

(2) Cost differential. The school food authority of a school participating in Provision 2 must pay, with funds from non-Federal sources, the difference between the cost of serving lunches and/or breakfasts at no charge to all participating children and Federal reimbursement.

(3) Meal counts. During the base year, even though meals are served to participating students at no charge, schools must take daily meal counts of reimbursable student meals by type (free, reduced price, and paid) at the point of service, or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. During the non-base years, participating Provision 2 schools must take total daily meal counts (not by type) of reimbursable student meals at the point of service, or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. For the purpose of calculating reimbursement claims in the non-base years, school food authorities must establish school specific monthly or annual claiming percentages, as follows:

(i) Monthly percentages. In any given Provision 2 school, the monthly meal counts of the actual number of meals served by type (free, reduced price, and paid) during the base year must be converted to monthly percentages for each meal type. For example, the free lunch percentage is derived by dividing the monthly total number of reimbursable free lunches served by the total number of reimbursable lunches served in the same month (free, reduced price and paid). The percentages for the reduced price and paid lunches are calculated using the same method as the above example for free lunches. These three percentages, calculated at the end of each month of the first school year, are multiplied by the corresponding monthly lunch count total of all reimbursable lunches served in the second, third and fourth consecutive school years, and applicable extensions, in order to calculate reimbursement claims for free, reduced price and paid lunches each month. The free, reduced price and paid percentages for breakfasts and, as applicable, snacks, are calculated using the same method; or

(ii) Annual percentages. In any given Provision 2 school, the actual number of all reimbursable meals served by type (free, reduced price, and paid) during the base year must be converted to an annual percentage for each meal type. For example, the free lunch percentage is derived by dividing the annual total number of reimbursable free lunches served by the annual total number of reimbursable lunches served for all meal types (free, reduced price and paid). The percentages for the reduced price and paid lunches are calculated using the same method as the above example for free lunches. These three percentages, calculated at the end of the base year, are multiplied by the total monthly lunch count of all reimbursable lunches served in each month of the second, third and fourth consecutive school years, and applicable extensions, in order to calculate reimbursement claims for free, reduced price and paid lunches each month. The free, reduced price and paid percentages for breakfasts and, as applicable, snacks, are calculated using the same method for each type of meal service.

(4) School food authority claims review process. During the Provision 2 base year (not including a streamlined base year under paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section), school food authorities are required to review the lunch count data for each school under its jurisdiction to ensure the accuracy of the monthly Claim for Reimbursement in accordance with §210.8(a)(2) of this chapter. During non-base years and streamlined base years, school food authorities must compare each Provision 2 school's total daily meal counts to the school's total enrollment, adjusted by an attendance factor. The school food authority must promptly follow-up as specified in §210.8(a)(4) of this chapter when the claims review suggests the likelihood of lunch count problems. When a school elects to operate Provision 2 only in the School Breakfast Program, school food authorities must continue to comply with the claims review requirements of §210.8(a)(2) of this chapter for the National School Lunch Program.

(5) Verification. Except as otherwise specified in §245.6a(a)(5), school food authorities are required to conduct verification in accordance with §245.6a. When a school elects to participate under Provision 2 or for all of the meal programs in which it participates (breakfast 7 CFR part 220 and/or lunch 7 CFR part 210), the applications from that school are excluded from the school food authority's required verification sample size and are exempt from verification during non-base years.

(6) Base year. For purposes of this paragraph (b), the term base year means the last school year for which eligibility determinations were made and meal counts by type were taken or the school year in which a school conducted a streamlined base year as authorized under paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section. Schools shall offer reimbursable meals to all students at no charge during the Provision 2 base year except as otherwise specified in paragraph (b)(6)(ii) of this section.

(i) Duration of the base year. The base year must begin at the start of the school year or as otherwise specified in paragraph (b)(6)(ii) of this section.

(ii) Delayed implementation. At State agency discretion, schools may delay implementation of Provision 2 for a period of time not to exceed the first claiming period of the school year in which the base year is established. Schools implementing this option may conduct standard meal counting and claiming procedures, including charging students eligible for reduced price and paid meals, during the first claiming period of the school year. Such schools must submit claims reflecting the actual number of meals served by type. In subsequent years, such schools shall convert the actual number of reimbursable meals served by type (free, reduced price and paid) during the remaining claiming periods of the base year, in which meals were served at no charge to all participating students, to an annual percentage for each type of meal. The annual claiming percentages must be applied to the total number of reimbursable meals served during the first claiming period in all non-base years of operation for that cycle and any extensions.

(c) Extension of Provision 2. At the end of the initial cycle, and each subsequent 4-year cycle, the State agency may allow a school to continue under Provision 2 for another 4 years using the claiming percentages calculated during the most recent base year if the school food authority can establish, through available and approved socioeconomic data, that the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined or has had only negligible improvement since the base year.

(1) Extension criteria. School food authorities must submit to the State agency available and approved socioeconomic data to establish whether the income level of a school's population, as adjusted for inflation, remained constant with the income level of the most recent base year.

(i) Available and approved sources of socioeconomic data. Pre-approved sources of socioeconomic data which may be used by school food authorities to establish the income level of the school's population are: local data collected by the city or county zoning and economic planning office; unemployment data; local SNAP certification data including direct certification; Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations data; statistical sampling of the school's population using the application or equivalent income measurement process; and, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families data (provided that the eligibility standards were the same or more restrictive in the base year as the current year with allowance for inflation). To grant an extension using pre-approved socioeconomic data sources, State agencies must review and evaluate the socioeconomic data submitted by the school food authority to ensure that it is reflective of the school's population, provides equivalent data for both the base year and the last year of the current cycle, and demonstrates that the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined or had only negligible improvement. If the school food authority wants to establish the income level of the school's population using alternate sources of socioeconomic data, the use of such data must be approved by the Food and Nutrition Service. Data from alternate sources must be reflective of the school's population, be equivalent data for both the base year and the last year of the current cycle, and effectively measure whether the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined or had only negligible improvement.

(ii) Negligible improvement. The change in the income level of the school's population shall be considered negligible if there is a 5 percent or less improvement, after adjusting for inflation, over the base year in the level of the socioeconomic indicator which is used to establish the income level of the school's population.

(2) Extension not approved. The State agency shall not approve an extension of Provision 2 procedures in those schools for which the available and approved socioeconomic data does not reflect the school's population, is not equivalent data for the base year and the last year of the current cycle, or shows over 5 percent improvement, after adjusting for inflation, in the income level of the school's population. Such schools shall:

(i) Return to standard meal counting and claiming. Return to standard meal counting and claiming procedures;

(ii) Establish a new base year. Establish a new Provision 2 base year by taking new free and reduced price applications, making new free and reduced price eligibility determinations, and taking point of service counts of free, reduced price and paid meals for the first year of the new cycle. For these schools, the new Provision 2 cycle will be 4 years. Schools electing to establish a Provision 2 base year shall follow procedures contained in paragraph (b) of this section;

(iii) Establish a streamlined base year. With prior approval by the State agency, establish a streamlined base year by providing reimbursable meals to all participating students at no charge and developing either enrollment based or participation based claiming percentages.

(A) Enrollment based percentages. In accordance with guidance established by the Food and Nutrition Service, establish a new Provision 2 base year by determining program eligibility on the basis of household size and income, and direct certification if applicable, for a statistically valid proportion of the school's enrollment as of October 31, or other date approved by the State agency. The statistically valid measurement of the school's enrollment must be obtained during the first year of the new cycle and meet the requirements of paragraph (k) of this section. Using the data obtained, enrollment based claiming percentages representing a proportion of the school's population eligible for free, reduced price and paid benefits shall be developed and applied to total daily meal counts of reimbursable meals at the point of service, or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. For schools electing to participate in Provision 2, these percentages shall be used for claiming reimbursement for each year of the new cycle and any extensions; or

(B) Participation based percentages. In accordance with guidance established by the Food and Nutrition Service, establish a new Provision 2 base year by determining program eligibility on the basis of household size and income, and direct certification if applicable, for a statistically valid proportion of participating students established over multiple operating days. The statistically valid measurement of the school's student participation must be obtained during the first year of the new cycle and meet the requirements of paragraph (k) of this section. Using the data obtained, participation based claiming percentages representing a proportion of the school's participating students which are eligible for free, reduced price and paid benefits shall be developed and applied to total daily meal counts of reimbursable meals at the point of service or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. These percentages shall be used for claiming reimbursement for each year of the new cycle and any extensions; or

(iv) Establish a Provision 3 base year. Schools may convert to Provision 3 using the procedures contained in paragraphs (e)(2)(ii) or (e)(2)(iii) of this section.

(d) Provision 3. A school food authority of a school which serves all enrolled children in that school reimbursable meals at no charge during any period for up to 4 consecutive school years may elect to receive Federal cash reimbursement and commodity assistance at the same level as the total Federal cash and commodity assistance received by the school during the last year that eligibility determinations for free and reduced price meals were made and meals were counted by type (free, reduced price and paid) at the point of service, or as otherwise authorized under part 210 of this chapter. Such cash reimbursement and commodity assistance will be adjusted for each of the 4 consecutive school years pursuant to paragraph (d)(4) of this section. For purposes of this paragraph (d), the term base year means the last complete school year for which eligibility determinations were made and meal counts by type were taken or the school year in which a school conducted a streamlined base year as authorized under paragraph (e)(2)(iii) of this section. The base year must begin at the start of a school year. Reimbursable meals may be offered to all students at no charge or students eligible for reduced price and paid meal benefits may be charged for meals during a Provision 3 base, except that schools conducting a Provision 3 streamlined base year must provide reimbursable meals to all participating students at no charge in accordance with paragraph (e)(2)(iii) of this section. The Provision 3 base year immediately precedes, and is not included in, the 4-year cycle. This alternative shall be known as Provision 3, and the following requirements shall apply:

(1) Meals at no charge. Participating schools must serve reimbursable meals, as determined by a point of service observation, or as otherwise authorized under part 210 of this chapter, to all participating children at no charge during non-base years of operation or as specified in paragraph (e)(2)(iii) of this section, if applicable.

(2) Cost differential. The school food authority of a school participating in Provision 3 must pay, with funds from non-Federal sources, the difference between the cost of serving lunches and/or breakfasts at no charge to all participating children and Federal reimbursement.

(3) Meal counts. Participating schools must take total daily meal counts of reimbursable meals served to participating children at the point of service, or as otherwise authorized under part 210 of this chapter, during the non-base years. Such meal counts must be retained at the local level in accordance with paragraph (g) of this section. State agencies may require the submission of the meal counts on the school food authority's monthly Claim for Reimbursement or through other means. In addition, school food authorities must establish a system of oversight using the daily meal counts to ensure that participation has not declined significantly from the base year. If participation declines significantly, the school food authority must provide the school with technical assistance, adjust the level of financial assistance received through the State agency or return the school to standard eligibility determination and meal counting procedures, as appropriate. In residential child care institutions, the State agency may approve implementation of Provision 3 without the requirement to obtain daily meal counts of reimbursable meals at the point of service if:

(i) The State agency determines that enrollment, participation and meal counts do not vary; and

(ii) There is an approved mechanism in place to ensure that students will receive reimbursable meals.

(4) Annual adjustments. The State agency or school food authority shall make annual adjustments for enrollment and inflation to the total Federal cash and commodity assistance received by a Provision 3 school in the base year. The adjustments shall be made for increases and decreases in enrollment of children with access to the program(s). The annual adjustment for enrollment shall be based on the school's base year enrollment as of October 31 compared to the school's current year enrollment as of October 31. Another date within the base year may be used if it is approved by the State agency, and provides a more accurate reflection of the school's enrollment or accommodates the reporting system in effect in that State. If another date is used for the base year, the current year date must correspond to the base year date of comparison. State agencies may, at their discretion, make additional adjustments to a participating school's enrollment more frequently than once per school year. If more frequent enrollment is calculated, it must be applied for both upward and downward adjustments. The annual adjustment for inflation shall be effected through the application of the current year rates of reimbursement. To the extent that the number of operating days in the current school year differs from the number of operating days in the base year, and the difference affects the number of meals, a prorata adjustment shall also be made to the base year level of assistance, as adjusted by enrollment and inflation. Upward and downward adjustments to the number of operating days shall be made. Such adjustment shall be effected by either:

(i) Multiplying the average daily meal count by type (free, reduced price and paid) by the difference in the number of operating days between the base year and the current year and adding/subtracting that number of meals from the Claim for Reimbursement, as appropriate. In developing the average daily meal count by type for the current school year, schools shall use the base year data adjusted by enrollment; or

(ii) Multiplying the dollar amount otherwise payable (i.e., the base year level of assistance, as adjusted by enrollment and inflation) by the ratio of the number of operating days in the current year to the number of operating days in the base year.

(5) Reporting requirements. The State agency shall submit to the Department on the monthly FNS-10, Report of School Programs Operations, the number of meals, by type (i.e., monthly meal counts by type for the base year, as adjusted); or the number of meals, by type, constructed to reflect the adjusted levels of cash assistance. State agencies may employ either method to effect payment of reimbursement for Provision 3 schools.

(6) School food authority claims review process. During the Provision 3 base year (not including a streamlined base year under paragraph (e)(2)(iii) of this section), school food authorities are required to review the lunch count data for each school under its jurisdiction to ensure the accuracy of the monthly Claim for Reimbursement in accordance with §210.8(a)(2) of this chapter. During non-base years and streamlined base years, school food authorities must conduct their own system of oversight or compare each Provision 3 school's total daily meal counts to the school's total enrollment, adjusted by an attendance factor. The school food authority must promptly follow-up as specified in §210.8(a)(4) of this chapter when the claims review suggests the likelihood of lunch count problems. When a school elects to operate Provision 3 only in the School Breakfast Program, school food authorities must continue to comply with the claims review requirements of §210.8(a)(2) of this chapter for the National School Lunch Program.

(7) Verification. Except as otherwise specified in §245.6a(a)(5), school food authorities are required to conduct verification in accordance with §245.6a. When a school elects to participate under Provision 3 for all of the meal programs in which it participates (breakfast 7 CFR part 220 and/or lunch 7 CFR part 210), the applications from that school are excluded from the school food authority's required verification sample size and are exempt from verification during non-base years.

(e) Extension of Provision 3. At the end of the initial cycle, and each subsequent 4-year cycle, the State agency may allow a school to continue under Provision 3 for another 4 years without taking new free and reduced price applications and meal counts by type. State agencies may grant an extension of Provision 3 if the school food authority can establish, through available and approved socioeconomic data, that the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined, or has had only negligible improvement since the most recent base year.

(1) Extension criteria. School food authorities must submit to the State agency available and approved socioeconomic data to establish whether the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, remained constant with the income level of the most recent base year.

(i) Available and approved sources of socioeconomic data. Pre-approved sources of socioeconomic data which may be used by school food authorities to establish the income level of the school's population are: local data collected by the city or county zoning and economic planning office; unemployment data; local SNAP certification data including direct certification; Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations data; statistical sampling of the school's population using the application process; and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families data (provided that the eligibility standards were the same or more restrictive in the base year as the current year with allowance for inflation). To grant an extension using pre-approved socioeconomic data sources, State agencies must review and evaluate the socioeconomic data submitted by the school food authority to ensure that it is reflective of the school's population, provides equivalent data for both the base year and the last year of the current cycle, and demonstrates that the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined or had only negligible improvement. If the school food authority wants to establish the income level of the school's population using alternate sources of data, the use of such data must be approved by the Food and Nutrition Service. Data from alternate sources must be reflective of the school's population, be equivalent data for both the base year and the last year of the current cycle, and effectively measure whether the income level of the school's population, as adjusted for inflation, has remained stable, declined or had only negligible improvement.

(ii) Negligible improvement. The change in the income level of the school population shall be considered negligible if there is a 5 percent or less improvement, after adjusting for inflation, over the base year in the level of the socioeconomic indicator which is used to establish the income level of the school's population.

(2) Extension not approved. Schools for which the available and approved socioeconomic data does not reflect the school's population, is not equivalent data for the base year and the last year of the current cycle, or shows over 5 percent improvement after adjusting for inflation, shall not be approved for an extension. Such schools must elect one of the following options:

(i) Return to standard meal counting and claiming. Return to standard meal counting and claiming procedures;

(ii) Establish a new base year. Establish a new Provision 3 base year by taking new free and reduced price applications, making new free and reduced price eligibility determinations, and taking point of service counts of free, reduced price and paid meals for the first year of the new cycle. Schools electing to establish a Provision 3 base year shall follow procedures contained in paragraph (d) of this section;

(iii) Establish a streamlined base year. With prior approval by the State agency, establish a streamlined base year by providing reimbursable meals to all participating students at no charge and developing either enrollment based or participation based claiming percentages.

(A) Enrollment based percentages. In accordance with guidance established by the Food and Nutrition Service, establish a new Provision 3 base year by determining program eligibility on the basis of household size and income, and direct certification if applicable, for a statistically valid proportion of the school's enrollment as of October 31, or other date approved by the State agency. The statistically valid measurement of the school's enrollment must be obtained during the first year of the new cycle and meet the requirements of paragraph (k) of this section. Using the data obtained, enrollment based claiming percentages representing a proportion of the school's population eligible for free, reduced price and paid benefits shall be developed and applied to total daily meal counts of reimbursable meals at the point of service, or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. For schools electing to participate in Provision 3, the streamlined base year level of assistance will be adjusted for enrollment, inflation and, if applicable, operating days, for each subsequent year of the new cycle and any extensions; or

(B) Participation based percentages. In accordance with guidance established by the Food and Nutrition Service, establish a new Provision 3 base year by determining program eligibility on the basis of household size and income, and direct certification if applicable, for a statistically valid proportion of participating students established over multiple operating days. The statistically valid measurement of the school's student participation must be obtained during the first year of the new cycle and meet the requirements of paragraph (k) of this section. Using the data obtained, participation based claiming percentages representing a proportion of the school's participating students which are eligible for free, reduced price and paid benefits shall be developed and applied to total daily meal counts of reimbursable meals at the point of service or as otherwise approved under part 210 of this chapter. For schools electing to participate in Provision 3, the streamlined base year level of assistance as described in this paragraph (e)(2)(iii)(B) will be adjusted for enrollment, inflation and, if applicable, operating days, for each subsequent year of the new cycle and any extensions; or

(iv) Establish a Provision 2 base year. Schools may convert to Provision 2 using the procedures contained in paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) or (c)(2)(iii) of this section.

(f) Policy statement requirement. A school food authority of a Provision 1, 2, or 3 school shall:

(1) Amend its Free and Reduced Price Policy Statement, specified in §245.10, to include a list of all schools participating in Provision 1, 2, or 3, and for each school:

(i) The initial year of implementing the provision;

(ii) The years the cycle is expected to remain in effect;

(iii) The year the provision must be reconsidered; and

(iv) The available and approved socioeconomic data that will be used in the reconsideration, if applicable.

(2) Certify that the school(s) meet the criteria for participating in the special assistance provisions, as specified in paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) or (e) of this section, as appropriate.

(g) Recordkeeping. School food authorities of schools implementing Provision 1, 2 or 3 shall retain records related to the implementation of the provision. Failure to maintain sufficient records shall result in the State agency requiring the school to return to standard meal counting and claiming procedures and/or fiscal action. Recordkeeping requirements specific to Provision 2 and Provision 3 include:

(1) Base year records. A school food authority shall ensure that records as specified in §§210.15(b) and 220.7(e) of this chapter which support subsequent year earnings are retained for the base year for schools under Provision 2 and Provision 3. In addition, records of enrollment data for the base year must be retained for schools under Provision 3. Such base year records must be retained during the period the provision is in effect, including all extensions, plus 3 fiscal years after the submission of the last Claim for Reimbursement which employed the base year data. School food authorities that conduct a streamlined base year must retain all records related to the statistical methodology and the determination of claiming percentages. Such records shall be retained during the period the provision is in effect, including all extensions, plus 3 fiscal years after the submission of the last Claim for Reimbursement which employed the streamlined base year data. In either case, if audit findings have not been resolved, base year records must be retained beyond the 3-year period as long as required for the resolution of the issues raised by the audit.

(2) Non-base year records. School food authorities that are granted an extension of a provision must retain records of the available and approved socioeconomic data which is used to determine the income level of the school's population for the base year and year(s) in which extension(s) are made. In addition, State agencies must also retain records of the available and approved socioeconomic data which is used to determine the income level of the school's population for the base year and year(s) in which extensions are made. Such records must be retained at both the school food authority level and at the State agency during the period the provision is in effect, including all extensions, plus 3 fiscal years after the submission of the last monthly Claim for Reimbursement which employed base year data. If audit findings have not been resolved, records must be retained beyond the 3-year period as long as required for the resolution of the issues raised by the audit. In addition, for schools operating under Provision 2, a school food authority must retain non-base year records pertaining to total daily meal count information, edit checks and on-site review documentation. For schools operating under Provision 3, a school food authority must retain non-base year records pertaining to total daily meal count information, the system of oversight or edit checks, on-site review documentation, annual enrollment data and the number of operating days, which are used to adjust the level of assistance. Such records shall be retained for three years after submission of the final monthly Claim for Reimbursement for the fiscal year.

(h) Availability of documentation. Upon request, the school food authority shall make documentation including enrollment data, participation data, available and approved socioeconomic data that was used to grant the extension, if applicable, or other data available at any reasonable time for monitoring and audit purposes. In addition, upon request from the Food and Nutrition Service, school food authorities under Provision 2 or Provision 3, or State agencies shall submit to the Food and Nutrition Service all data and documentation used in granting extensions including documentation as specified in paragraphs (g) and (h) of this section.

(i) Return to standard meal counting and claiming. A school food authority may return a school to standard notification, certification and counting procedures at any time if standard procedures better suit the school's program needs. The school food authority will then notify the State agency.

(j) Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands. Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, where a statistical survey procedure is permitted in lieu of eligibility determinations for each child, may either maintain their standard procedures in accordance with §245.4 or may opt for Provision 2 or Provision 3 provided the eligibility requirements as set forth in paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e) of this section are met, as applicable.

(k) Statistical income measurements. Statistical income measurements that are used under this section to establish enrollment or participation base claiming percentages must comply with the standards outlined as follows:

(1) For enrollment based claiming percentages, statistical income measurements must meet the following standards:

(i) The sample frame shall be limited to enrolled students who have access to the school meals program;

(ii) A sample of enrolled students shall be randomly selected from the sample frame;

(iii) The response rate to the survey shall be at least 80 percent;

(iv) The number of households that complete the survey shall be sufficiently large so that it can be asserted with 95 percent confidence that the true percentage of students who are enrolled in the school, have access to the school meals program, and are eligible for free meals is within plus or minus 2.5 percentage points of the point estimate determined from the sample; and

(v) To minimize statistical bias, data from all households that complete the survey must be used when calculating the enrollment based claiming percentages for paragraphs (c)(2)(iii)(A) and (e)(2)(iii)(A) of this section.

(2) For participation based claiming percentages, statistical income measurements must meet the following standards:

(i) The sample frame must be limited to students participating in the meal program for which the participation based claiming percentages are being developed;

(ii) The sample frame must represent multiple operating days, as established through guidance, in the meal program for which the participation based claiming percentages are being developed;

(iii) A sample of participating students shall be randomly selected from the sample frame;

(iv) The response rate to the survey shall be at least 80 percent;

(v) The number of households that complete the survey shall be sufficiently large so that it can be asserted with 95 percent confidence that the true percentage of participating students who are eligible for free meals is within plus or minus 2.5 percentage points of the point estimate determined from the sample; and,

(vi) To minimize statistical bias, data from all households that complete the survey must be used when calculating the participation based claiming percentages for paragraphs (c)(2)(iii)(B) and (e)(2)(iii)(B) of this section.

(Sec. 9, Pub. L. 95-166, 91 Stat. 1336 (42 U.S.C. 1759a); secs. 805, and 819, Pub. L. 97-35, 95 Stat. 521-535 (42 U.S.C. 1773))

[Amdt. 19, 45 FR 67287, Oct. 10, 1980, as amended by Amdt. 23, 47 FR 14135, Apr. 2, 1982; 66 FR 48328, Sept. 20, 2001; 76 FR 22802, Apr. 25, 2011]



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